Annette Bening (born 29.5.1958)
Annette Bening is an American actress, well-known for her roles in Bugsy and American Beauty.
Childhood & Early Acting Career: Annette Bening was born in Topeka, Kansas, to Shirley and Arnett Grant Bening. Her mother was a church singer and her father was an insurance salesman. The family later moved to Wichita and then San Diego.
Annette began acting at junior high school, where she played the lead role in The Sound of Music. She went on to study drama at Patrick Henry High School.
After graduating from high school, Bening attended San Diego Mesa College before undertaking a degree in theatre arts at San Francisco State University. She then joined the American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco. It was here that she laid the groundwork for her reputation as a talented stage actress.
Acting Career: After leaving San Francisco, Annette Bening moved to New York, where her stage debut came off-Broadway with the Second Stage Theatre, playing Holly Dancer in Coastal Disturbances, alongside Tim Daly. Despite having gained herself a formidable reputation for her stage acting, it took some time for her film career to develop.
In 1986, Bening made her TV debut in the TV movie, Manhunt for Claude Dallas. Two years later, her film debut came with an appearance in The Great Outdoors, starring Dan Aykroyd and John Candy. The next year, she starred in Valmont with Colin Firth.
Annette Bening started off the 1990s with a role in The Grifters. The film was directed by Stephen Frears and starred Angelica Houston and John Cusack. Her performance was highly revered and led to her landing a role in Bugsy, with Warren Beatty, Harvey Keitel and Ben Kingsley.
Originally, Annette Bening was selected to play the role of Catwoman in Batman Returns but had to relinquish the role to Michelle Pfeiffer.
In 1994, Bening starred opposite Katharine Hepburn in Love Affair. She then received $3 million to play the role of Elise Kraft/Sharon Bridger in The Siege, alongside Bruce Willis and Denzel Washington.
One of Bening's key roles was in 1999's American Beauty. The film starred Kevin Spacey, Mena Suvari and Thora Birch. Directed by Sam Mendes, American Beauty was a hit with critics and cinema-goers alike and won five Academy Awards.
Mike Nichols has cast Annette Bening in three of his movies: Postcards From the Edge (written by Carrie Fisher and starring Shirley MacLaine and Dennis Quaid), Regarding Henry (with Harrison Ford) and What Planet Are You From? (with John Goodman, Garry Shandling and Greg Kinnear).
In 2006, Annette Bening starred in Running with Scissors, alongside Ryan Murphy and Joseph Fiennes.
Regaining the critical acclaim that she achieved for American Beauty, Bening wowed the critics with her performance in 2010's The Kids Are All Right. The film, a comedy-drama, also starred Julianne Moore and Mark Ruffalo.
Personal Life: Following the breakdown of her first marriage to the choreographer J. Steven White, Annette Bening married the actor Warren Beatty, with whom she has four children.
Russell Simmons and Annette Bening - 20th Anniversary of The National Urban Technology Center Gala Awards Dinner held at Gotham Hall at Gotham Hall - New York, New York, United States - Wednesday 17th June 2015
Middle-aged romances are rare on the big screen, so it's frustrating that this one is so badly compromised by a series of contrived plot points. One gimmick wasn't enough for director-cowriter Arie Posin, who continually twists and turns the events in ways that are both bizarre and melodramatic. Within this, Annette Bening and Ed Harris still manage to create intriguing characters, but it becomes increasingly difficult to care when the screenwriters clearly have trouble on their minds.
It opens as Nikki (Bening) is flooded with memories of her husband Garret (Harris), who died five years ago while they were vacationing in Mexico. Now that their daughter (Jess Weixler) is moving away from home in Los Angeles to attend college in Seattle, Nikki has time to think. Although she wants to remain friends and nothing more with her lusty widowed neighbour Roger (Robin Williams), an old friend of Garret's. Then Nikki meets a man who looks uncannily like Garret and begins stalking him. Tom (Harris again) is an art professor, and when Nikki gets up the nerve to talk to him, she knows she's going to a very odd place.
The film is like a variation on Vertigo, as Posin plays up the freaky doppelganger storyline to add a heightened sense of dangerous tension. But it's not so easy for the audience to accept such a set-up, when one honest conversation would solve everything. Instead, Nikki lies to everyone she knows, hides Tom from them and then lies to Tom as well. It's difficult to take a romance seriously when it has such a fraudulent foundation. Thankfully, Bening gives Nikki a fragility that makes her sympathetic, and her interaction with Harris bristles with unexpected connections because they are experiencing their blossoming relationship in such strikingly different ways. Both of them add layers of interest to their characters that make them engaging between the lines. Sadly, Williams' character never gets a chance to evolve.
Continue reading: The Face of Love Review
Michel Hazanavicius' 'The Search' failed to hit the spot at Cannes.
In many ways, Michel Hazanavicius always had a tough job creating the follow-up to his Oscar conquering movie The Artist, though it's been 2 years since the silent movie dominated the field at the Hollywood and Highland Center Theatre in Los Angeles and the Frenchman has had plenty of time to plot his comeback.
Michel Hazanavicius [L] and his wife Berenice Bejo [R]
That return was marked this week at Cannes with The Search, a drama starring his wife Berenice Bejo and the talented Annette Bening.
Even though this comedy has a tendency to dip into cartoonish silliness, it's anchored by a razor-sharp performance by Wiig as a woman forced to confront everything she hates about herself. The film is also packed with hilarious moments that keep us laughing, and it also gets surprisingly sexy and emotional along the way.
Wiig plays Imogene, who has done nothing with her career after winning a rising-star playwright award. Then she loses her day job as a listings editor just as her high-flier boyfriend (Petsos) leaves her. When she fakes a suicide attempt to get some attention, she's court-ordered to move in with her free-spirited mother Zelda (Bening) back home in New Jersey. There she struggles with Zelda's colourful boyfriend George (Dillon), who claims to be a top-secret spy, her goofy-inventor brother Ralph (Fitzgerald) and the smart, sexy and very young lodger Lee (Criss) who rents her old bedroom. But just as she's beginning to cope, a family secret shakes her to the core.
Even as the script strains to be improbably zany, Wiig holds the film together with a startlingly honest comical turn. From the start we knew she didn't fit in with her Manhattan friends, and her slightly out-of-control personality is much more suited to the Jersey Shore. Her scenes with Criss are very nicely played, as they develop an unexpected relationship. By contrast, Bening struggles to appear as dim as Zelda seems to be, while Dillon hams it up as her fantasist toy boy and Fitzgerald's Ralph is so nutty that he seems to be from another movie altogether.
Continue reading: Girl Most Likely Review
Gwyneth Paltrow's underwear will be the most talked about moment from the 'Thanks for Sharing' trailer - though the film could turn out to be pretty decent.
Ok so this happened. Gywneth's Paltrow's underwear, well, lingerie, is on full show in the trailer for her new movie 'Thanks for Sharing,' about three people who undergo a 12-step treatment to cure sex addiction. The 40-year-old wife of Coldplay's Chris Martin strips down to her smalls in the new clip which rolled out online on Wednesday (June 26, 2013).
Gywneth Paltrow At The Iron Man 3 Premiere - She Plays Pepper Potts In The Movies
Obviously you may have better things to do than watching Paltrow parading about in lingerie, but just in case you don't, the trailer's below. The comedy-drama also stars Tim Robbins (Shawshank Redemption), Josh Gad (Book of Mormon), Mark Ruffalo (Zodiac) Joely Richardson (Nip/Tuck), Carol Kane (Annie Hall) and the pop-star Pink.
This years Governors Awards saw one heck of a turn out in terms of famous faces, with honouree Jeffrey Katzenberg and Academy Award-winning director Steven Spielberg just two of the big names in attendance at the black tie event.
This years Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award was handed to Katzenberg, honouring his ongoing commitment to charity, with the the founder and chief executive of Dreamworks Animation set to be given his award during the Oscar ceremony in February 2013. Fellow honourees at the gala include arts advocate George Stevens, Jr., documentarian D.A. Pennebaker and stunt performer and director Hal Needham.
Sidney Poitier and Annette Bening introduced Stevens, speaking highly of his commitment to the arts before allowing him to the stage - where he thanked his late father for encouraging him to consider film a timeless art and "for opening the door for me to a creative life."
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has already raised $100 million towards the development of a museum dedicated to the history of movies.
The non-profit organisation has a goal of $250 million to raise for the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures and has already raised a substantial amount of that, despite only launching the campaign earlier this year.
Donations to the scheme have been received from private donors, as well as from some of the major Hollywood film studios. According to The Wrap, The Walt Disney Company, NBCUniversal, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Twentieth Century Fox, Warner Bros. and Lionsgate have all contributed to the scheme so far, as have a number of Academy members, including the co-chairs and their families, as well as past Academy Governors. The campaign for cash was promoted and chaired by prominent industry figures such as Annette Bening, Tom Hanks and Walt Disney’s chairman Bob Iger.
Continue reading: $100 Million Raised For Academy Movie Museum In Los Angeles
An extraordinary cast lifts this grim British drama into something watchable, even if the script ultimately gives up trying to make any sense. The main problem is that the story is very badly fragmented, but it still captures a vivid sense of how it felt to grow up in 1962 Britain. And the actors give performances that bring the characters to life even in scenes that are somewhat melodramatic.
Ginger and Rosa (Fanning and Englert) are inseparable 16-year-olds who were born in the same hospital on the same day. As they both ponder the horrific possibilities of the Cold War, their reactions begin to diverge, perhaps their first disagreement ever. Ginger's parents (Hendricks and Nivola) are liberal-minded and about to separate yet again, so she takes a militant approach to stopping nuclear annihilation. Rosa lives with her deeply religious single mother (May) and believes that the only thing to do is pray about it. But the thing that drives a real wedge between the girls is Ginger's suspicion that her dad might be having an affair with Rosa.
In the early scenes, Potter establishes the girls as imaginative friends with free spirits who do everything together. Then the plot begins to take increasingly dark twists and turns, leading to a series of awkward or downright horrible confrontations that are freaky and emotional but also thoroughly mawkish. There's a lot of glowering and weeping on display from everyone on-screen. Fortunately Fanning and newcomer Englert maintain a loose honesty in their performances that helps carry us through the difficult moments. And the starry supporting cast is terrific.
Continue reading: Ginger and Rosa Review
A romantic comedy with a dark twist, this film gets under the skin as it knowingly explores both the writing process and the nature of relationships. It also gives its cast a lot to play with in scenes that feature both broad slapstick and much more serious drama.
Paul Dano stars as Calvin, a writer who struck lightning with his first novel at age 19 and hasn't been able to write anything since. His brother (Messina) teases him about his future, his agent (Mandvi) is pushing him to write a new novel, and his therapist (Gould) just wants him to write something, anything. So he starts typing up a story about the girl (Kazan) who appears in his dreams. Then there she is, Ruby Sparks, in his kitchen! Sure he's officially losing his mind, he's shocked to discover that others can see her too. So he brings her into his life as his girlfriend, even introducing her to his hippie mother and stepdad (Benning and Banderas).
The film starts out as a breezy comedy, and Dano plays these scenes for laughs, including several broadly silly set-pieces as Calvin first meets Ruby. But the undertone very quickly starts turning serious, as we begin to understand the central themes about how we relate to our partners. Would we control their behaviour if we could? Get rid of annoying habits? Make them be more like our idea of the perfect spouse? But of course, that would cause a whole new set of problems.
Continue reading: Ruby Sparks Review
Fortunately writer-director Garcia is very careful to avoid wallowing in sentimentality.
Elizabeth (Watts) is a shark-like lawyer who easily seduces her new boss Paul (Jackson). She's had a difficult emotional life, and prefers to keep things under control, managing her friendships and relationships with icy distance.
Continue reading: Mother and Child Review
Nic and Jules (Bening and Moore) have been a couple for more than 20 years, and life is pretty matter-of-fact for them and their two kids, 18-year-old Joni (Wasikowska) and 15-year-old Laser (Hutcherson). Since Joni is now of age, Laser talks her into contacting their mothers' sperm bank so they can meet their biological father. He turns out to be restaurant owner Paul (Ruffalo), a cool guy who shakes their life up in ways none of them could expect. The big question is whether they can ever be the same again.
Continue reading: The Kids Are All Right Review
Date of birth
29th May, 1958